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Old 07-27-2016, 11:54 AM   #1
BeauBoi
Mike @ Outback Reptiles

Hello All,

Whenever I complete a transaction, I try to make a habit of posting about it here on the BOI. All but one other time, I have posted a "Good Guy" thread, but sadly that isn't the case in this transaction.

I contacted Mike Saturday (the 23rd) about a Female Amel Corn Snake with an odd pattern that he had advertised on the Outback website. I had never ordered from Mike before and I wanted to introduce myself and to make sure that the snake was in fact available. The snake was only $55 w/ $55 shipping, so it came to $110 and Mike said that he would ship it out Monday. He said he would send me a tracking number Monday evening.

Monday evening came around, but I hadn't gotten a tracking number, so I sent him a text message asking if plans had changed for some reason. He never got back with me.

Tuesday morning came, and I had taken off work so I could be home to receive the snake, but I still hadn't received a tracking number so I tried calling him several times (I also tried calling him on the alternative "office" number), and at 10:00 am I emailed him.

At 11:48 I finally received an email from Mike. You can read the email below, as I am posting all my communications with Mike. Essentially he said that he was mistaken and the animal had already been sold. He offered me a 10% discount on a future sale (and later, he offers to order me a pizza...), which I declined, and said he would refund my money, which I accepted.

Obviously, something went wrong at Outback Reptiles, but I don't really know what happened. At Lucille's suggestion, I gave Mike the opportunity to offer an explanation, but he never elaborated.

I know what ~should~ have happened: At the very least, when time came to ship the snake to me on Monday, someone should have called me. I am particularly irritated that no one would answer my phone calls, or return my messages until I had sat around at home till noon waiting for a snake that wasn't coming. It's just common courtesy.

I don't want a discount on future orders (I have never understood that, to be honest). You will see in the below emails, that Lucille suggested that she thought he should give me a free corn snake, but even if he had offered one, I wouldn't want that either. The only thing Mike had that I wanted, he no longer has (and I certainly don't want a pizza).

As you can see in the emails, Mike asked me what he could do to make me happy and I suggested that he rectify the problem and make sure it doesn't happen to someone else in the future.

Other wise, I have my refund and have been made as "whole" as possible in this situation. Mike apologized and I told him that I accept his apology. I have notified Mike of this thread.

~BeauBoi
(Eyvonne Hammonds)

* As an aside note: I initially contacted Lucille and asked her if she thought it was worth posting this to the BOI. While she mused about the possible reasons this deal went south, she also said something that caught my attention, "the system should be changed so that (sic) the customer doesn't go through this. That is when I decided to go ahead and post this to the BOI. The communications between Lucille and myself have been included with the emails.


(Emails are listed, last one first)

RE: Amel Corn Snake
Today at 7:42 PM

Mike,
I never asked you to publicly apologize. In fact I didn't "ask" you to do anything. You asked me what would make me happy, and I answered, that you could fix it so things like this don't happen to future customers and that (if you wanted) you could post that to the BOI. I also told you, you could post that "you just cannot make some people happy", because that is true too.

I am sitting down to supper with my family now.

Again, Best Wishes,
Eyvonne Hammonds

Sent from my iPhone


RE: Amel Corn Snake
Today at 7:06 pm

Honestly I am not concerned about BOI posts, you'll notice I encouraged you to post there in one of my first replies. I have apologized several times and you're still obviously upset so I have no reason to believe that I will experience any different results apologizing again tomorrow on the BOI that you are fixated upon. As far as I'm concerned, our business was concluded when I refunded your payment and you refused my additional offers (that I was under no obligation to make for you).

As far as your assessment of some people's reception to happiness- well, honestly, who says no to free pizza? ;-)

Have a great evening and I look forward to hearing from you tomorrow on fauna...

Thanks,
Mike

Outback Reptiles
mike@outbackreptiles.com
Office: 703-365-2262
Cell: 703-895-0043


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: Amel Corn
Date: Tue, July 26, 2016 6:08 pm
To: Mike Schultz <mike@outbackreptiles.com>

How about this, instead of trying to buy my forgiveness, just post on the BOI tomorrow and tell everyone how you are going to make changes so that other people in the future aren't sitting around their house waiting for a snake that is never going to come?
The BOI will go up regardless (just like my other BOIs) but how you respond to it is up to you. You can say that "There isn't any way to make some people happy" or you can make sure it never happens again. It's is up to you.

I got my refund, and I accept your apology. Mentioning the BOI wasn't a threat, or an attempt to get anything from you. You only get one chance to make a first impression. The only thing I expect from people I do business with is common courtesy, and you dropped the ball on that one. If you really want to make me happy, the closest you are going to come is to make sure this doesn't happen in the future.

I wish you the best, and good night.
Eyvonne Hammonds

Sent from my iPad

On Jul 26, 2016, at 5:26 PM, Mike Schultz <mike@outbackreptiles.com> wrote:

Eyvonne, I admitted I made a mistake, apologized, refunded you your money immediately and I offered you a future discount. I'm really not sure what else you would like from me at this point. You've stated that you're never going to do business with me, so a discount won't do. How about this: it's pizza night! Have you eaten dinner yet tonight? I can have a pizza sent to your door. What's your favorite topping?

Thanks,
Mike

Outback Reptiles
mike@outbackreptiles.com
Office: 703-365-2262
Cell: 703-895-0043


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: Amel Corn Snake
Date: Tue, July 26, 2016 4:45 pm
To: Mike Schultz <mike@outbackreptiles.com>

So if I order a snake of the same price, I will receive a $5.50 discount? That somehow makes up for me staying home from work for a day to wait for a shipment from you?

You will notice that I never asked you for a discount. In fact, it was Lucille and not myself who thought you should give me more.

You can't go back in time, but if you could (or if in the future something like this occurs again), perhaps you should actually answer a person's phone calls and explain; or, alternately, have the decency to call them yourself and apologize in person for the mistake, preferably notifying the individual as soon as you are aware of the error on the part of your staff (which should have been obvious Monday when you checked online sales to see what was scheduled for shipping). Verbally acknowledging that you have the item in question for sale, then accepting payment, followed by ignoring calls, emails and voicemails rather than simply answering or returning a call is simply rude.

As far as the BOI goes, I have posted a BOI for every transaction I have ever made. I have never posted a "Bad Guy" thread, and I never said that I would post one on you. I have, however, posted an Information thread (once) when I got a sick snake from BHB and they refused to return calls or emails, and I think it is perfectly reasonable to let people know that we did a deal and you didn't uphold your end of the bargain. If you don't even know what inventory you have in stock, people should know that too.

Eyvonne Hammonds

Sent from my iPad

On Jul 26, 2016, at 4:10 PM, Mike Schultz <mike@outbackreptiles.com> wrote:

Hi, your money has been refunded and I've offered you a discount on a future purchase to make up for the mistake. If you think this is grounds for a fauna thread, you are welcome to post there. Again, I am sorry for the mistake.

Thanks,
Mike

Outback Reptiles
mike@outbackreptiles.com
Office: 703-365-2262
Cell: 703-895-0043


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: Amel Corn Snake
Date: Tue, July 26, 2016 1:23 pm
To: Mike Schultz <mike@outbackreptiles.com>

HI Mike,
I am going to be honest with you. It is really difficult for me to express how disappointed I am over this transaction. As I believe I mentioned to you in our first phone conversation, I was in the process of placing a large order with another company when I came across the snake you were advertising. I ended up reducing the size of that order so I could make this purchase from you.

There are aspects about this failed transaction that simply do not make sense to me, and while I despise frivolous complaint threads posted to the BOI, I found myself considering posting an Information Thread there referencing this failed transaction. So, I shared the timeline and information with my friend Lucille on Fauna.

The following (read from bottom to top), are the PMs between myself and Lucille, which she has suggested that I share with you.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucille
A lot depends on why he did not call. There may have been personal or business matters that took his attention, but even still, he should have made some kind of notation in the system or on the cage that this was a sold critter. Or he may have actually been trying unsuccessfully to do something to reverse the sale his employee made.
I think you should forward this PM and my answer to him and ask for a more detailed explanation of what happened and be honest about your disappointment.
If he was actually working in your behalf behind the scenes to try to see if he could get the sold snake back, because it was sold at the same time you bought it, and couldn't, then it's just one of those things, his employee didn't know. But if he forgot to label the snake and it got sold after you paid for it, you have every right to be upset and 10% doesn't get it, you should probably get a free snake and an assurance that the system will be changed so that once paid for, a customer's undelivered snake cannot subsequently be sold to someone else.


Quote:
Originally Posted by BeauBoi
Hi Lucille,
I hope your day is going well. I hate to be a bother, but I was hoping you could give me your perspective on something.
Friday (the 22nd) I stumbled onto an add at Outback Reptiles for a corn snake with an unusual pattern. After consideration, I called Mike Shultz at Outback and asked about the snake. He confirmed that he still had her and told me that if I went ahead and purchased her, that he would ship her Monday for delivery today, and that I should expect to receive a tracking number late Monday evening.
Monday evening rolled around, but I didn't receive a tracking number. I called Mike at 8pm and left a message. I asked if shipping plans had changed, since I hadn't received a tracking number.
This morning, I still hadnt heard from Mike. I have called both numbers associated with Outback and emailed as well. Still no response.
I just got an email from Mike, saying that he is sorry but an employee sold the snake already and he just forgot to let me know until now, and that he will refund my money as soon as he can. Also, he says he will give me a 10% discount on a future order (an order I will never make).
I know mistakes happen, but now my money is tied up with him and I am offended that he didn't have the decency to simply answer my phone calls or reply to my messages until now.
Is it worth posting a BOI on this?
Thanks in advance,
Evie
Sincerely,
Eyvonne Hammonds

Sent from my iPad

On Jul 26, 2016, at 11:48 AM, Mike Schultz <mike@outbackreptiles.com> wrote:

Hi, apologies for the poor communication; I've been back and forth between our different facilities all morning. Unfortunately I was mistaken about having the amel- I got back to the shop from our shows yesterday and realized that while the bin was in its spot, it had been sold previously by a different employee and they did not break down the bin. And it totally slipped my mind about shipping yesterday. I understand this is kind of a pain for you as you were expecting me to contact you about it and I did not. I'll have your refund processed ASAP for the animal and as a token of good will / apologies for the inconvenience, I'd be happy to discount 10% from any future purchase for you.

Thanks,
Mike

Outback Reptiles
mike@outbackreptiles.com
Office: 703-365-2262
Cell: 703-895-0043


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Amel Corn Snake
Date: Tue, July 26, 2016 10:11 am
To: mike@outbackreptiles.com

Hi Mike,
We spoke Saturday when I purchased the Amel Corn Snake from your website. At that time, you indicated that you would be shipping Monday for Tuesday delivery, and I should expect a tracking number by Monday evening. I never received any further contact. If you needed to delay shipping (due to weather, ect,) that is fine, but I need to be kept in the loop. Please let me know what is going on.
Attached is my receipt of payment from your website.
Thanks,
Eyvonne Hammonds
Sent from my iPad

Begin forwarded message:

From: Outback Reptiles <mike@outbackreptiles.com>
Date: July 23, 2016 at 4:43:13 PM EDT
Subject: Your Outback Reptiles order receipt from July 23, 2016

Outback Reptiles
Thank you for your order
Your order has been received and is now being processed. Your order details are shown below for your reference:
Order #7064
Product Quantity Price
Amel Corn Snake - Adult Female (#amelfemale)
1 $55.00
Subtotal: $55.00
Shipping: $55.00 via Flat Rate
Payment Method: PayPal
Total: $110.00
 
Old 07-27-2016, 11:59 AM   #2
BeauBoi
This is the text message I sent after waiting for a tracking number.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg image.jpg (110.1 KB, 1241 views)
 
Old 07-27-2016, 12:03 PM   #3
BeauBoi
This is a picture of my cell phone showing where I tried contacting Mike on the day I was supposedly waiting for delivery.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg image.jpg (121.4 KB, 1243 views)
 
Old 07-27-2016, 12:52 PM   #4
senusenu
I really don't even understand how, if you are going to have a website and local sales that show the same exact stock, that you don't have some kind of system in place to ensure animals don't get sold twice (in the store and on the website). At the very LEAST, before anything else happens with that animal, they should be looking up their online sales to see if someone made a purchase beforehand.

Not doing that bare minimum of effort is incredibly lazy and is the best way to disappoint and piss off potential/current customers. It can't take more than 30 seconds to look up the website's stock, and if the animal in the store is listed online, it should have a product number on its cage that can be referenced with the online store.

He seems very blasé about the "mistake". "Aw shucks, ma'am, I didn't mean it." No big deal to him, he got money anyway, and you are potentially out wages for the day that you stayed home waiting for nothing. I certainly wouldn't take a chance to order again with a whole whopping $5.50 discount on a future order. Who's to say it won't just happen again?
 
Old 07-27-2016, 01:03 PM   #5
Mike Schultz
You keep saying you want me to "rectify" the situation

Let's lay it out here....

As soon as I got into the shop tuesday morning I emailed you explaining:
-Why I hadnt answered your calls to the shop phone (I was not there)
-That we did not have the snake and I was immediately issuing a refund (Which I did)
-That I had made a mistake and forgotten to call you the day before, (and apologized)
-And that I would be happy to give you a future discount to make up for the mistake (a token of good faith that I was not really obligated to offer)

I even offered to buy you a pizza after you told me you weren't going to order from me ever again, so I really had no motivator to do that besides me trying to be helpful... But you're right, I guess some people are never happy.

This could have been yours but instead i'm eating it while replying to BOI threads. /shrug
Attached Images
File Type: jpg pizza boi.jpg (86.3 KB, 1230 views)
 
Old 07-27-2016, 01:06 PM   #6
Mike Schultz
Quote:
Originally Posted by senusenu View Post
I really don't even understand how, if you are going to have a website and local sales that show the same exact stock, that you don't have some kind of system in place to ensure animals don't get sold twice (in the store and on the website). At the very LEAST, before anything else happens with that animal, they should be looking up their online sales to see if someone made a purchase beforehand.

Not doing that bare minimum of effort is incredibly lazy and is the best way to disappoint and piss off potential/current customers. It can't take more than 30 seconds to look up the website's stock, and if the animal in the store is listed online, it should have a product number on its cage that can be referenced with the online store.

He seems very blasé about the "mistake". "Aw shucks, ma'am, I didn't mean it." No big deal to him, he got money anyway, and you are potentially out wages for the day that you stayed home waiting for nothing. I certainly wouldn't take a chance to order again with a whole whopping $5.50 discount on a future order. Who's to say it won't just happen again?
I was at a show all weekend, which is why I did not know the animal was sold until afterwards. I did not "get her money anyway" I refunded it to her.
 
Old 07-27-2016, 01:06 PM   #7
DollysMom
I followed this on Cornsnakes.com from your first post with a picture of the snake you ordered to resolution. I'm so sorry this happened to you. I'm sure you were excited to have found such a lovely snake, and deeply dissappointed to not have your very reasonable status inquiries answered.

I'm very glad you got a prompt refund. That's a lot. How many threads I've read here where that is not the case.

It is my wish that no one ever sits home for a snake that never comes. I don't understand why sellers can't text, email, or answer the phone. When an honest mistake is made, the buyer should be notified and if needed refunded, as soon as it is found. At the very least your inquiry should flag a problem for them to disclose the problem. Most people understand and appreciate honesty. It is simply common courtesy. We all make mistakes, but mistakes made though system failures need correction.
 
Old 07-27-2016, 01:09 PM   #8
Mike Schultz
Quote:
Originally Posted by DollysMom View Post

It is my wish that no one ever sits home for a snake that never comes. I don't understand why sellers can't text, email, or answer the phone. When an honest mistake is made, the buyer should be notified and if needed refunded, as soon as it is found. At the very least your inquiry should flag a problem for them to disclose the problem. Most people understand and appreciate honesty. It is simply common courtesy. We all make mistakes, but mistakes made though system failures need correction.
As soon as I got into the shop tuesday morning and realized the mistake, I fixed the problem. I'm really not sure what else I could have done besides fix the problem and offer several options to make up for it.
 
Old 07-27-2016, 01:20 PM   #9
BeauBoi
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Schultz View Post
As soon as I got into the shop tuesday morning and realized the mistake, I fixed the problem. I'm really not sure what else I could have done besides fix the problem and offer several options to make up for it.
You could actually called me (or answered my calls...), explained exactly what happened, and given me the opportunity to ask questions.

You could have offered to try and find a comparable animals (through all of those breeders you deal with "all around the world" that you talked about doing business with during our initial conversation) and offered to ship it at actual shipping cost (rather than $55 flat rate) if you REALLY wanted to "make up for" leaving me hanging until after I should have already received the animal.

In a post above, sensusenu describes exactly how it felt when I got your email-- "awe shucks, ma'am.." Particularly, when you act like I'm "lucky" you offered me a 10% discount. Nothing about how you handled this was "lucky".

~Beau
 
Old 07-27-2016, 01:21 PM   #10
DollysMom
Mike, I appreciate that. However, I think the words everyone is waiting to hear is either that this was a "one of" where an employee totally fouled up in spite of a good system, or that you found a hole in your system and are doing what is humanly possible fixing it.

I've been on your end of things in a totally different field and am not without empathy with sellers and the challenges they face overall. You did refund promptly. This is by no means a bad guy thread.
 

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